Dragon Ball games are only found in Japan
Since its debut in Shonen Jump in 1984, Dragon Ball has become one of the most popular and recognizable anime series of all time. Like many popular shows, Dragon Ball has received many video games throughout its run and even a few after. But since it took a few years for the series to reach an international audience, there are a number of games based on Dragon Ball that have only ever seen a release in Japan.
Although Dragon Ball is receiving international recognition, there are still even newer games that have never been released outside of Japan. Here is a selection.
ten Dragon Ball: The Great Uncharted Region of Dragons
Dragon Ball: Dragon Daihikyou, or Dragon Ball The Great Unexplored Dragon Region, when translated into English, was the first Dragon Ball game. It was released in 1986 for the Super Cassette Vision console – a platform only available in Japan and Europe by Epoch.
Dragon Daihikyou is a vertical shoot ’em up where Goku rides his flying nimbus as he defeats enemies, receives power-ups from his allies, and collects dragon balls. Dragon Daihikyou is simpler than later games based on the series. Despite being exclusive to an older console, the game has never been re-released or remade for another platform.
9 Dragon Ball Z: Assault! The Saiyans
Dragon Ball Z: Kyoshu! Saiyan, or Dragon Ball Z: Assault! The Saiyans was released on the Famicom in 1990 and is the first game based on Dragon Ball Z instead of the original series. As can be seen from the title, Kyoshu! Saiyan mainly covers the Saiyan saga of Dragon Ball Z, the first arc of the sequel series. It also features events and characters from Dragon Ball Z The Dead Zone, the first Dragon Ball Z movie.
The game was also included in the J-Legend Retsuden compilation for the Nintendo 3DS in 2013, alongside its sequel, Dragon Ball Z 2: Gekishin Freeza!!, or Dragon Ball Z 2: A Fierce God Freeza!!
8 Dragon Ball Z: Super Saiya Legend
Dragon Ball Z: Super Saiya Densetsu, which translates to Dragon Ball Z: Super Saiya Legend in English, was released in 1992 for the Super Famicom and was the first Dragon Ball Z game created for the console. Super Saiya Densetsu is a remake of Kyoshu! Saiyan and Gekishin Freeza!!, combining the two games into one.
Unlike the two games it was based on, Super Saiya Legend does not include any events from the anime filler arcs or the movies, making it more accurate compared to the original manga. Super Saiya Densetsu also features an increased number of playable characters compared to its predecessor.
7 Dragon Ball Z Gekito Tenkaichi Budokai
Dragon Ball Z: Gekito Tenkaichi Budokai, or Dragon Ball Z: A Fierce Battle at the Number One Under Heaven Martial Arts Gathering, was released on the Famicom in 1992. Gekito Tenkaichi Budokai came with a device known as the Datach Joint Rom System , a card reader that can add characters and objects to the game based on scanned cards.
Gekito Tenkaichi Budokai had 19 playable characters in total, but the player needed their respective cards to play as them. In a way, Gekito Tenkaichi Budokai could be considered a predecessor to Dragon Ball Heroes, as both use card-reading technology.
6 Dragon Ball Z Side Story: Plan to Eradicate Saiyans
Released in 1993 for the Famicom, Dragon Ball Z Side Story: Plan To Eradicate The Saiyans is relatively well known to fans due to its OVA adaptation and the 2010 remake of said OVA that was included with copies of Dragon Ball Z: Raging Blast 2.
Plan To Eradicate The Saiyans has its own story instead of just adapting the various sagas from the manga and anime series. For this reason, Plan To Eradicate the Saiyans has two original characters, truffle scientist Dr. Lychee and Hatchiyack, a supercomputer created by Dr. Lychee that eventually grows into a deadly and powerful fighting machine.
5 Dragon Ball Z The Greatest Legend of Son Goku
Released in 1994 for the PC Engine – or the TurboGrafx-16 in North America – Dragon Ball Z: Idainaru Son Goku Densetsu, or Dragon Ball Z: The Greatest Son Goku Legend, is a fighting game where the story is structured like Gohan telling his little brother Goten about the most formidable enemies their late father had faced.
Because of this, the story ends after Goku dies after trying to save the world from Perfect Cell’s planet-destroying explosion. The game also has three playable characters, Kid Goku, Adult Goku, and Teen Gohan, so its roster is much smaller than those featured in previous games.
4 Dragon Ball Z: Goku Hishoden
Dragon Ball Z: Goku Hisoden, or Dragon Ball Z: Goku’s Soaring Legend, was released for the original Game Boy in 1994 as the first Dragon Ball Z game for the handheld console and covered the end of the 23rd World Martial Arts Tournament. and the Saiyan Saga.
In addition to the story mode, the game also has a training mode, a world martial arts tournament mode, and a game mode that can only be accessed by playing the game using a Super Game Boy. The following year, it also had a sequel called Dragon Ball Z: Goku Gekitoden, or Dragon Ball Z: Goku’s Fierce Battle, which covers the Freeza saga.
3 Anime Creator: Dragon Ball Z
Anime Designer: Dragon Ball Z is similar to the many series-specific anime and filmmaking games released throughout the 90s and early 90s. It was released in 1996 for the Pippin Atmark console, a console exclusive to Japan created from a partnership between Apple Computer and Bandai Digital Entertainment.
Although the game includes plenty of footage from Dragon Ball Z and even a few from Dragon Ball GT, there doesn’t seem to be much from the original series, and the reason for this is unknown. Despite Dragon Ball Z’s popularity, the game remained exclusive to the Pippin Atmark, never seeing a release on other platforms.
2 Dragon Ball Z2V
Dragon Ball Z 2 V is an updated version of Dragon Ball Z Budokai 2 which was released in 2004 and only available through a giveaway from V-Jump magazine, where they gave away 2,000 copies of the game to participating readers.
The game added new alternate costumes for several characters, an updated World Martial Arts Tournament stage, and no saves as it was already 100% complete. It was also the first game in the Budokai series to feature a playable character from the movies, as two of Freeza’s alternate costumes are actually Cooler and Meta-Cooler, respectively.
1 Dragon Ball Kai: Ultimate Butoden
Dragon Ball Kai: Ultimate Butoden was released for the Nintendo DS in 2011 and is the ninth game in the Butoden series and the first and only console game to use the Dragon Ball Kai name.
In addition to a Story Mode that spans the Dragon Ball Z sagas from the Saiyan Saga to the Kid Buu Saga, Ultimate Butoden also features a Practice Mode, Challenge Mode, Versus Mode, and customization mode where players can change costumes for each character. King Kai also makes his first and only playable appearance in the game, although he does not fight in the series.
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